Human beings make mistakes. It is a part of life, as much as we may hate it.
One of the harder aspects of depression (at least from my perspective) is perfectionism. In a nutshell, it is the ultimate desire to be perfect and the toll it takes to reach a goal that is forever unreachable. In my case (and I suspect in many others who suffer from mental illness), the unrealistic expectations create a negative emotional spiral, regardless of whether a mistake has actually happened.
It feels like failure is not an option and will never be an option. The only way to be is perfect, knowing full well that perfection is impossible. When a mistake is imagined, it could easily trigger an anxiety attack. When a mistake is real, it feels nothing short of life shattering. It’s as if we are unworthy of all the good things that life offers, unless we are perfect.
Perfect is one of the songs on Alanis Morissette’s ground breaking 1995 album, Jagged Little Pill. I can’t think of a better way to sum up the disease that is perfectionism.
I hate to say it, but we all fail once in a while. Whether is because of poor judgement, lack of knowledge or another reason, we all fail at least once.
One of the podcasts I listen to regularly is on a website entitled Problogger. Run by Darren Rowse, a successful blogger who has found a way to earn a living as a blogger, he talks about anything and everything that has to do with blogging.
This week’s podcast was about how to overcome failure in six steps. The thing that struck me about not only the subject of the podcast, but the suggestions laid out, is that the steps don’t just apply to bloggers and blogging. They can be used by anyone for any aspect of their life.
Failure is hard. It’s depressing, it’s ego bruising and not a fun experience to say the least. But we all go through it and the old adage is true. What doesn’t kill us really does make us stronger.
One of the most comforting thing I’ve heard about failure came from Oprah Winfrey. A failure is merely a course correction. Of course it’s difficult, but sometimes it is necessary.
I highly recommend this particular episode to all of my readers and Problogger in general to anyone who has a blog or is considering starting a blog. The experience will be well worth it.